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Literature / Eloise

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Charge it, please, and thank you very much.

Eloise is a series of children's books written by Kay Thompson and illustrated by Hilary Knight, following the misadventures of a six-year-old girl who lives in the Plaza Hotel in New York City, along with her "mostly companion" Nanny, her pet dog Weenie, her pet turtle Skipperdee, and the staff and guests who stay there.

A Live-Action Adaptation, starring Evelyn Rudie as Eloise and Mildred Natwick as Nanny, aired as an episode of Playhouse 90 in 1956. Two live-action TV movies, starring Sofia Vassilieva as Eloise and Julie Andrews as Nanny, were produced by Disney and aired on ABC in 2003, starting with Eloise at the Plaza and followed the same year with the sequel Eloise At Christmastime. Eloise: The Animated Series, featuring Mary Mouser as Eloise and Lynn Redgrave as Nanny, was produced Film Roman and aired on Starz Kids & Family in 2006.

Books in the series:

  • Eloise: A Book for Precocious Grown-ups (1955)
  • Eloise in Paris (1957)
  • Eloise at Christmastime (1958) (adapted for TV as Eloise At Christmastime in 2003)
  • Eloise in Moscow (1959)
  • Eloise Takes a Bawth (2002)

Tropes associated with this series are:

  • Animated Adaptation: Had an animated series that only ran for 13 episodes.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Eloise tends to do this in the adaptations where she often if not always addresses the viewer while narrating her adventures.
  • Cheerful Child: Eloise is almost always happy.
  • Creator Cameo: Series illustrator and co-creator Hilary Knight appeared as himself in the film, drawing Eloise and Leon as the latter two take a stroll throughout Manhattan.
  • Creepy Doll: Saylor, a beaten-up old plastic baby doll.
  • The Faceless: Eloise's mother arrives at the hotel at the end of Eloise at Christmastime but the camera never shows her her full face.
  • Hotel Hellion: Eloise is said to be the Trope Maker, considering her propensity to cause mischief in and around the Plaza Hotel.
  • Live-Action Adaptation:
  • Mistaken for Brooding: In one book, Eloise crashes a wedding. A woman in the audience is weeping Tears of Joy, so Eloise thinks she's upset. She then plays the piano and loudly sings to cheer her up, startling the whole congregation in the process.
  • No Name Given: Nanny is simply called "Nanny". Even adults call her this, including her own brother! Also, Eloise's mother's name is never mentioned.
  • Official Cosplay Gear: In line with the 60th anniversary of the series, Rachel Riley released a series of designer children's outfits and accessories inspired by the character, including this blouse and suspender skirt set. Prior to Riley, similarly-themed clothing for girls based on the character were sold in the 1950s at Neiman Marcus and other upscale boutiques.
  • Only One Name: Eloise's family name is never brought up.
  • Parental Abandonment: Eloise's mother is traveling in Europe and Paris doing unknown business and her father is never seen or mentioned.
  • Pretty in Mink: In one book Eloise travels to Russia, and she gets a fur coat for the trip.
  • Rule of Three: Nanny and Eloise usually use a final word of a sentence in three times for emphasis.
  • Verbal Tic: Eloise and Nanny's repetition, and Eloise describing everything with "this [X]"